What are Lumineers®?
Lumineers® are ultrathin veneers of about 0.3mm thickness. They are distinct from conventional veneers as it is not necessary to cut the tooth and so anaesthesia is not required. They are simply bonded to the top of the teeth, covering up a variety of dental problems and giving the patient a beautiful white smile.
Lumineers® vs veneers: pros and cons
Both Lumineers® and veneers involve fixing porcelain shells to damaged teeth to protect them and restore a natural, healthy appearance. They hide dental flaws and improve the patient’s smile. Both are strong, durable, and easy to maintain; neither option should stain over time. They are similarly priced, and patients report that both options are comfortable and look natural.
However, there are some differences:
- About 5mm of tooth must be removed to make room for the veneers, including protective enamel. This leaves the tooth sensitive and unprotected until the veneer is fixed and if the veneer ever has to be removed.
- Thicker and more resistant than Lumineers®.
- Made from traditional porcelain
- Only in very specific cases is a contouring necessary. The patient will not suffer from increased sensitivity, as the entire enamel structure is left intact.
- Thinner than veneers so they can fit over the uncut tooth and enamel.
- Made from more resistant porcelain than that of traditional veneers to compensate for being thinner.
- May look and feel slightly bulkier than veneers.
Lumineers® are also reversible, which means that if after a few years the patient does not want to have them anymore, they can be removed and still have their teeth and enamel intact.
Why is it done?
Lumineers® are applied to:
- Cover up stained, darkened or discoloured teeth and restore a whiter, brighter smile.
- Restore cracked or chipped teeth.
- Hide gaps between teeth.
- Improve the appearance of slightly crooked teeth.
What does the procedure consist of?
One of the great advantages of Lumineers® is the simplicity of the procedure. The surface of the teeth do not have to be removed, nor is it required to put temporary veneers. Anaesthetic is not needed, making it a totally painless treatment.
The process consists of choosing the type of smile and checking whether the candidate is suitable for that type of veneer. Next, measurements are taken and sent to the Lumineers® laboratory. Once the veneers arrive, they are placed on the patient’s teeth, resulting in a natural smile with permanent whiteness. The placement process can last a few hours, depending on the number of pieces to be fitted.
Care after the intervention of Lumineers veneers
How long Lumineers® remain in good condition will depend on the patient’s habits and lifestyle. They should last for many years, but the patient should take good care of their new smile, maintaining good oral hygiene and paying regular visits to the dentist.